Thursday, June 27, 2013

A Haunting in the Haight, by Sarah Mathews

Belle has never been able to turn down a good ghost story or haunted location, so when a haunted home in San Francisco is put up for sale, she and her family move in.  Almost immediately strange things begin happening, not all of which can be attributed to ghosts.  Belle is being tortured by her husband's ex-wife, Raffaella.  Sometimes the scariest hauntings are done by the living.

Like Belle, I too cannot turn down a good ghost story.  I started reading books about hauntings, fictional and purported fact, when I was about 8 years old, and have forever remained fascinated.  You do not come across many fresh takes on the ghost story anymore, what with all the paranormal investigation shows and what not.  So I was quite pleased with the spin this book had on paranormal activities.  The book certainly had the feel of an Amityville horror type story, with the house being such a tragic location, but the reasons behind the hauntings provided a twist worthy of M. Night Shymalan.  I particularly loved the way facts about real haunted San Francisco locations, like the Winchester House (inspiration for Stephen King's "Rose Red" t.v. movie).

I probably was most drawn to the paranormal characters, both living and dead.  To me, they were the heart of the story.  The action centered on them, and they were the ones in control of the story, most notably Raffaella.  However, I did have a soft spot for the alcoholic dog, George, who added a bit of levity to the story.

All in all, this is a good, solidly written ghost story, that offers something fresh to the genre.  A real find indeed.

I received a review copy courtesy of the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

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